Rotarians

I am not that someone
who revels in hate

Her look at the bar
left me cold-eye weighed

Poor Phil-the-farmer
could not match my smile

as Val took her drink
leaving her stare to scythe

Those Witches of Newick
have stirred their dark brew –

they sweat its rank scent –
a mephitic perfume

I settled with my pint
in the turned barrel seat –

my lonely remove
was my greeting defeat


The Present

This moment, at ten-thirty,
his present is wrapped,
and I am sat sweating,
bloated after breakfast,
me feeling slowed, heavy,
the grain turns inside,
and to now head back
to hand-deliver the card
and a paperback copy
of ‘When Breath Becomes Air’
for this friend, an occasional
husband to a dying widow:
Birthdays push us closer.